The Money Tree

“The heart surrenders everything to the moment. The mind judges and holds everything back.”
Ram Dass 

 

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A Money Tree further down the driveway

 

 

Hello and welcome,

As my hubby and I prepare to leave Melbourne for London in just over a week, we are making good progress with our ‘to-do’ list…
until a small bush between our driveway and the next door neighbour’s fell onto our side. It wasn’t a high priority to tend to it immediately, and became something else to add to the growing list of things to finalise before departure day.

I decided this particular sunny lunch time I would sneak out to begin breaking off the branches that had toppled over.

I was all set to dive into one of my beloved podcasts while I performed the operation, when my lovely neighbour appeared. She came over onto my side to have a chat and noticed what I was about to do.
She offered to help me and I reassured her I would be able to manage it on my own. I didn’t want her to put herself out, as she was still carrying her handbag…and after all, I was all set for some good listening while I was busy in the lovely winter sun, before scurrying back inside to pack and fill in forms.

She insisted she help, and promptly began breaking up some of the softer branches.
I watched on as she took control of the situation, initially disappointed that my ‘quiet time’ outside was disappearing.
As I watched her, I suddenly became overwhelmed with a feeling…

A feeling of ‘no, this is happening exactly as it should be. Just allow the moment to unfold…Give her space to help if she insisted on doing so.’

And so I did.

After proceeding to fetch the garden waste bin and wheeling it out to the driveway, we both worked together, chatting as we went.

Two neighbours home at the same time on a sunny lunch time.

It was more special because we haven’t had a lot to do with them, although we were always on friendly terms whenever we would cross paths- everyone seems to keep to themselves a lot more now days.

May, my neighbour, referred to the bush as a Money Tree. I’m not very strong with botanical names or common names for many plants and flowers so I took her word for this.
A feeling that pervaded this story was of a moment that was ‘off my script’…the script being my ‘to-do’ list for the day.

A keen sense that I will perhaps never share time like this again with my lovely neighbour enabled me to just ‘be’, knowing I was preparing to fly off for a long period of time. I remained enveloped in the contentment that everything is unfolding as it should, the acceptance and surrendering that sometimes the most magical of moments occur when we least expect them.

It proffered new meaning for the ‘Money Tree’ experience…

…Perhaps we both became richer that afternoon.

…Perhaps the pruning of the tree gave us greater insight into each other, the chance to pause and appreciate.

It have me reason to think that sometimes the most beautiful moments are the ones that take us off course…
The moments that don’t match our script…
The moments we aren’t expecting…
We have to make room for these moments because this is where the love lies,
in the micro-moments,
through the fostering of connection.

And you know what? I still managed to do all my other chores I had planned for the afternoon. Sometimes I find if I proceed slowly, I actually get more done. It seems to be a little paradox of Time I have noticed.

May we all grant ourselves permission to things to take us off course,
to leave the script from time to time,
to be mindful of these moments occurring before our eyes…
and simply share the gift of our presence.

“Remember then: There is only one time that is important – Now! It is the most important time because it’s the only time when we have any power.”
Leo Tolstoy


Thank you for being here,
Much love,
Di

 

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Inspirational people…

 

Hello to you, and welcome,

This week, I’m saying very little…
I really want to introduce you to two utterly inspiring Australians who epitomise the art of Resilience

Firstly, Maurice Gleeson, who is without vision after a childhood accident. If you have ever wondered, like I have often, what to say to someone who has been through a difficulty, from six minutes in, you will learn so much.
Maurice has beautiful life wisdom that it would be unfair of me not to share him.
I do hope the link opens for my friends outside Australia… I’ve enabled Adobe…

The second awesome Australian is Turia Pitt.

I’ve been following Turia’s journey since she came to our attention after being horrifically burnt in a fire in 2012.
She is interviewed with her amazing partner in a short video that I’m sure will melt you, move you and have you reaching for the tissues. Throughout it all is a beautiful story of Love and resilience.

Please don’t listen to do me a favour, please listen to do yourselves a favour. 

If we are able to soak up the wisdom from people who have been through so much… If they can inspire us…
If their tragedies, struggles and triumphs can be given meaning by sharing of
themselves for others…

Anything I can do to share stories and inspiring people who allow us the gift of falling in love with life again after hardships…then I’m content…

I wish you well,
much love,

Di xx

 

An interview with Maurice Gleeson from ‘The Weekly With Charlie Pickering: Interviews Series 3.’

 

 

An interview with Turia Pitt

Creative prompt…The Bright Side of Life.

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The quote above is from the Monty Python song ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life.’ A very cheerful tune in itself…I hope you can sing along whilst you are reading…

Hello there, this week, I’m contributing to Nikki of FlyingThrough Water and her creative prompt ‘The Bright Side’.

There is so much goodness that comes from being positive, looking on the bright side, not dwelling on the negative. This has been promoted heavily in the self-help movement as Positive thinking.
Keeping Gratitude journals are excellent ways to maintain our focus on the good things in life. Even if at times it feels as if life really isn’t going in our favour.

But is it necessary and even healthy, to ignore a huge part of life when things go wrong?
To attempt to deny the feelings that accompany the less desirable parts of life?

It’s easy to fall into the pattern of blame and negative thinking with phrases such as ‘this always happens to me’, ‘I never win anything,’ and ‘everyone else seems to be having a better life than me…’ These defeating self talk patterns can swim around and around in our head for days, weeks or even months. Believe me, I know. I’ve been called a catastrophizer in the past…
We are unaware of how much it’s become an ingrained, almost reflex attitude to life. We are in great danger of attracting more of what we don’t want through these negative reactions.

This isn’t acceptance of the challenges that arise. It’s more about living in fear.

But there is another way of accepting the curve balls that life throws at us. It’s called Positive Psychology and is described beautifully in a short interview here by a researcher called Barbara Fredrickson. She believes resilience and strategies for managing the hard times is the more proactive way to respond. I hope you find it helpful.

 Dr. Andrea Dinardo writes about these important topics in her inspiring blog,
Thriving under Pressure.

Can we still find happiness when we are facing hard times that can rock us to our core?
Can we really just look on the bright side of life that readily?

I believe it comes down the that beautiful expression…
We can ‘make lemonade out of lemons’…

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Now, I can see a huge pile of sour, bitter lemons presenting themselves before me. Yes, they are here, they are not going away anytime soon.
What to do with them now they are mine? Somehow I took ownership of them without even asking…

Well, I can try to ignore them, long enough, and the rotting sphere of once brilliant yellow will call us to attention even harder. Glossing over things and ignoring them can only be of value for a period of time.

Or

I can sit with them for a while, say ‘hello lemons’, ponder ‘what am I going to do with you?’
Leaving them in the back of the fridge in the dark will not make them go away.

Ok… attitude shift.
I’ll take those lemons, slice them open to allow the light of  day to penetrate, squeeze them until the juice inside runs out, after all, the only way to remove the juice is through squeezing them… and when I have taken what I can from them, it’s now time to find a way to make it work for me. To restore the sweetness to life, even in the midst of discovering that things aren’t proceeding as planned or as I wished them to be.

I add sugar…

So perhaps it’s not about desperately thrashing around in a stressful state aiming to remove or find a quick fix for something…

It’s not about turning a blind eye to the challenges, less than desirable experiences and negative parts of life, as if they didn’t exist, attempting to sweep them under the carpet.

Perhaps looking on the bright side of life is truly about acceptance of what is, sitting with negativity, sadness, disappointment, just long enough for our emotions to feel seen and heard. Once we name the beast, we tame the beast, and could we even find a way to love it?

Like a recipe I need to modify, it’s not possible to remove the ingredients already mixed…

But what I may choose to do is add a sprinkle of this, a dash of that, a pinch of something extra, until before us lies a totally new recipe, while still incorporating the initial ingredients.

I re-write the recipe.

Adding Love to the situation through…
Discovery
Belief
Choice
Surrender
Trust
Peace

Loving what’s presenting itself to us just now manifests as…

Adopting a fresh attitude,
Discovering how this issue is contributing to my growth, through choosing to believe it’s here as my teacher,
Creating a purpose for its existence even when it seems near impossible at the time. Cradling my thoughts into surrendering to ‘what is’, if I cannot change the situation.
I can also choose to see it as something that is part of a bigger picture, one I am not necessarily privy to just now, so I can add trust along with the surrender.
Perhaps with time, I am able to reflect, to see the experience as a superpower; one that affords me the opportunity to serve others going through their own tough times.

As Shakespeare wrote in Hamlet,

‘There is nothing either good nor bad, but thinking makes it so.’

I’ll leave you with this beautiful piece, called
‘Amazing advice on Happiness at 92 years old.’

It’s relating a story about a 92 year old lady with vision impairment who knew the time had come to enter a nursing home. Her story, I’m sure, will melt your heart. I hope you have time to read it when suits you… there are many gems of life lessons contained within…

As always, I am very grateful to you for being here.
Thank you again Nikki for an awesome prompt…

Much love,
Di xx

 

 

Lessons from a year of Yoga…

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The wall hanging in the studio for Yoga class. I really loved its imperfect appearance with the wiggly words…

 

Hello and welcome to a new post…

I joined Yoga in July last year to recover from the back pain I wrote about in three parts. I’m including the links for easy access. You are welcome to read about that journey if you are a new friend here…

 Curiosity, and the blessings from back pain… Part One

Curiosity and the blessings of Back pain… part two.

Curiosity and the Blessings of Back pain… Part Three

It’s been an eye opening year, and the benefits from Yoga are becoming palpable. These lessons were borne after a class. I began to notice subtle changes over how I was managing setbacks and disappointments during certain poses…

It was as though I’d become less reactive and more patient with myself…

May you enjoy them as they lay their goodness upon me…

✨For every forward bend, inversion, stretch, there is an opposite movement. Too much of one position can create imbalances and cause our body to grow into that stance until it takes much work to undo it.

✨There are times when it hurts…
Hold through the pain, let it flow through you and trust it be over soon, as nothing lasts forever…good and bad.

✨Focusing on breathing, and remembering to breathe through the challenges, creates a naturally peaceful state, and encourages us to be fully in the present moment…

✨Sometimes we cannot do a pose alone. We need to lean on someone, taking turns at being the one who holds the other person up.

✨Remembering that if a pose is unattainable this week, there is always next week. We are forever changing, evolving, or just having a bad day, so it’s certainly worth attempting it next class… we will more than likely attain it then…

✨And if we don’t, remember there things called are baby steps that edge us ever so slowly towards our goal.

✨If we rush into a pose, we may make an incorrect decision about how it’s meant to be…
Take your time.

✨It’s important to remain flexible.
‘Rigid’ doesn’t allow for new moves, and has the potential to keep us stuck in the one position.

✨Sometimes it makes such a difference looking at things from upside down, to fully appreciate what we are looking at.
Often we look without truly seeing.

✨Maintaining poise and balance during a movement allows us to look ahead, to remain relaxed during the challenging poses.

✨Keep your eyes on a focal point. Choose something to focus on and keep it in your sight to maintain balance. Once your eyes roam, and determined focus dissolves, you lose your way…

✨If you lose your balance, don’t stress and be unkind to yourself.
Regain your poise, take a breath, focus and start over…

After all, it’s called ‘Yoga Practice’ for a reason.

✨Don’t, at any cost, compare your ‘now’  to someone else’s ‘now’ who appears to be attaining the poses perfectly…
Life is a journey and we are all on a different part of the path…
Follow your own lead and carve your own…
Only compare where you are today with where YOU were last time…
We can be inspired by them, but not at the expense of our self-worth.

✨Finally, I’ve learnt that we really are one.
We share each other’s joys,
We share each other’s pain.

….Namaste…

Thank you for reading,

Love,
Di 💜

 

 

Forgiveness and self-acceptance, to Sympathetic Joy…

Hello and welcome,

I’d love to share another cuppa together while we ponder sympathetic joy through the art of self-acceptance through forgiveness…

I’m contributing this piece to Debbie, of Forgiving Connects and her ForgivingFridays initiative, where she kindly invites us to ponder the steps we can take towards self-forgiveness, a huge leap towards self-acceptance and love.

 

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Accepting ourselves involves all the traits we deem unworthy of our acceptance.
We cannot begin to see ourselves as whole until we acknowledge those parts of us we are hoping no one notices….

Take jealousy for example…

I’ve been the worst at being jealous of everyone and everything they’ve achieved.
It’s only recently I’m beginning to get a grip on this.

I can see where these intense feelings were coming from now….
I wasn’t happy with myself. It was like life had become one huge race, where there was one set of rules on how to be successful, how to live a happy life…

I was living according to everyone else’s idea of what that should look like.

As a result, I’d allow myself to gravitate towards traits, experiences, material things that I associated with a successful life.

Perhaps I was running away from being myself?

This realisation began through the critical journey towards self-acceptance…

Learning to explore what those intense feelings were trying to teach me, began the journey to accept it as part of me.
And like a naughty child, once some attention is given to them, they don’t feel as desperate to create havoc…

Becoming more comfortable with myself enabled me to reach a point where I can now be happy for others’ successes. Any residual feelings means there are more lessons for me to learn.

As part of this acceptance, I discovered there is a term in Buddhism for this…the wonderful world of Sympathetic Joy.

Once I discovered I could cultivate this by focusing less on ‘eradicating’ jealousy, and focusing on learning how to be truly happy for others, it became a new way of thinking, like a mindful mental workout.

That doesn’t mean that little ‘green eyed monster’ won’t rear its little head any more.

But I’ve made peace with who I am, what I believe are my strengths and can laugh at the ‘rest’ of me now. Believe me, there are plenty of those occasions….

It helps negate the desire for the worst kind of comparison…the type that originates from those feelings of unworthiness, as opposed to being inspired to reach a level we wish to attain, coming from a place of love, or simply just being happy within ourselves for no particular reason.

The act of self-acceptance means when we have our buttons pushed by others, we have a greater capacity for seeing that person with compassion and understanding, knowing where they are coming from….after all, at any given moment we can also be in that place of discomfort and need to lash out in our own way.

In our wholeness, we can also at times be belligerent, jealous, thoughtless…

I forgive myself for feeling inadequate when I compare myself unfavourably against others, or display emotions that I have deemed ‘unworthy’.

A spiritual journey isn’t so much about ignoring  or attempting to ‘mend’ all those parts of us.
It’s about diving deep into our messiness, understanding ourselves, going ‘within’ in order to have greater capacity to emerge, with greater awareness of the impact we have on others.

In a way, it can become the essence of our purpose…

It begs us to ask the question, ‘How can I be more loving in this situation?’

We learn to respond rather than react.

When we return to the world in a state of non-judgement towards ourselves, we can offer this gift of peace, of being fully present and compassionate towards everyone we meet, including revelling in their joyful moments.
In other words, we see ‘us’ in everyone….

Everyone becomes our teacher, helping us forge deeper roots to anchor our growth…

It embraces the power of connection, and is my new interpretation of the expression ‘we are all connected’…

…when we can delight in the joy of others, because we too understand joy,
and also…

…when we can sit with them in their pain, because we have also known pain.

That’s when the beautiful magic between us and others begins…

The quote by Teal Swan is from the link I’m including here, titled ‘Self Love – The great Shortcut to Enlightenment.’
If you have a desire to listen in your own time, I hope you enjoy it too. There are some amazing pearls of wisdom in her teachings.

As always, I thank you for being here,
Much love from Di 💜

 

Re-blog… ‘Unexpected gifts from my homeless friends —By (Almost) Unsalvageable.’

Hello and welcome,

I’d love to share a post by a blogging friend by the name of Gabe.

He writes an inspiring blog called (Almost) Unsalvageable where his writing and digital paintings inspire, uplift and educate.
Gabe has a wonderful sense of humour that he infuses into many of his posts,
alongside his ‘willingness to be vulnerable.’

His post below touched many of his readers by highlighting and sharing the ‘voice’ of the homeless in his city.

…Thank you for this heartfelt post, Gabe.

I hope you enjoy it too. You’ll find the full version by clicking on the blue link below Gabe’s artwork.

Thank you for visiting this week,

much love,

Di ♥️

 

 

 

I’ve been sitting on this sketch for a few weeks now, waiting for the right time to share it with you. Paul, one of the two authors at Two Voices One Transmission asked me to create a sketch based on descriptions of several characters in this blog post. His interactions with his “favorite neighbors,” who…

via Unexpected gifts from my homeless friends — (Almost) Unsalvageable

Time…

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When you are courting a nice girl, an hour seems like a second. When you sit on a red-hot cinder, a second seems like an hour.” Albert Einstein.

Time is Nikki’s weekly creative prompt at FlyingThroughWater and one that has intrigued me for a long time too.

Jim Croce sang in his beautiful song ‘Time in a Bottle’

‘There never seems to be enough time,
to do the things you want to do,
once you find them.’

And also from that song…

‘If I could save time in a bottle,
The first thing I’d like to do
Is to save every day ‘til eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you.’

Chicago sang about it in a song titled ‘Does anybody really know what time it is?’

Pink Floyd, Cyndi Lauper and so many other famous artists have sung about time. There is a wonderful post by UpVenue by someone who has wondered the very same thing. They have included video clips of their choice of some of the most beautiful songs written about time…

There is a bible verse in Ecclesiastes 3:1 ‘There is a time for everything.’
It has been made into another beautiful song. I’ve included the link as sung by The Byrds.

This concept has intrigued us most probably, since the beginning of time…
There are movies such as ‘Back to the Future’, ‘Midnight in Paris’, ‘Groundhog Day’, ‘Terminator’, and television series such as ‘Doctor Who’ inspire us to challenge the notion that time is a liner experience. Einstein himself proffered the thought that ‘the dividing line between past, present and future is an illusion.’

It appears as if it has captured our imagination…

We all experience ‘time flying when we are having fun’, and ‘time dragging’ when we wish it would be the end of something we don’t particularly enjoy doing.

And so, it’s come to the time to share some exciting news with you

There is a time to dream…
There is a time to imagine…
There is a time to create reality…

A dream I have held close to my heart…
The desire to meet the world, when that little girl was peering through the airport glass wishing she could fly off to far away lands.
The dream to expand my horizons, to challenge my comfort zone, to leave the known for a while and immerse myself in someone else’s world..
is coming true.

It’s time… my childhood dream of living in London and becoming part of life there is now reality. For some reason it’s called both of us for much of our life…my husband and I are making the most of the opportunity of transferring to London with the company he is with here in Melbourne. So come September, my blog may perhaps have a different flavour about it.
I also just wanted to let you know in case I’m not keeping up with all your wonderful posts as often as I’d like to…

Is it because the time is right at this moment in life?
Is it because it was time to stop dreaming and start to truly imagine it?
Is it because it was time to relinquish my fear of making this dream come true?

Many times we hear that things aren’t as fun in reality as they are in our minds and dreams…

But at what cost should be forego pursuing them in order to maintain the wonder?

Some things just may be worth fighting for so we don’t reach the end of our life with that one niggling regret…

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Thank you for being here,

Much love,

Di ♥️

Pondering Photography…

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“Enhance your energy field with photographs. You may find it difficult to believe that photography is a form of energy reproduction and that every photograph contains energy.”
Dr Wayne Dyer from his book, ‘The Power of Intention.’

Welcome, and please join me for a quick cuppa today,

It’s perhaps no secret that I have fallen head over heels in love with photography…
I continually seek to discover why it’s magic taken a hold…

You may think, why worry about the ‘why’ and just go with it. And for the most part, I do too, but as you know if you have read my previous posts, I have studied so many courses in energy healing and…

Oh my goodness! I just had my ‘aha’ moment as I’m typing this! The power of the equivalent of journaling…

…I am using photography as my method of healing through the capturing, the post-production and posting of my photographs…
I’m still using the energy medicine I love so much, but in a most unexpected way…

I’ve read the quote by Dr Dyer already a few times, but it’s only here just in this moment, that it has truly resonated with its full meaning for me.

Photography is only one creative endeavour that would offer this transfer of energy and in fact, is just a small part of Chapter Four in his book, which discusses the many ways it’s possible to raise our energy vibrations…

Every photograph that someone will deem as beautiful has the capacity to send those healing energies, and in my own way, this is perhaps how I am supposed to heal, through my creativity, through my passion, through finding my joy.

Is this the point of finding our purpose and making the world a better place?
Can it be as simple as finding our joy?

Raising the vibration of myself and those who view my and others’ photographs, or any other beautiful creation?

Enabling people to grant themselves permission to simply ‘feel’, to express their emotions, to reminisce, to shed a tear, to be inspired, to heal…?

I very recently purchased a camera to encourage me to learn more about this art. I still love my iPhone camera, but the ability to use zoom with a view to enlarging prints, was calling me strongly.

There is something about capturing something I find beautiful in a precise moment in time.
There is a power, an urge to create, a thrill that’s difficult to describe…
It’s a very subjective thing of course, but there will be a time when something we create resonates profoundly with another human being.

Otto, in his wonderful photography blog, In Flow, discusses a poignant aspect of photography in his post about finding our ‘voice’, our photographic signature, and indeed runs workshops about discovering this very thing.
Thank you Otto, you have given me something upon which to ponder…
What is my signature, how shall I share my ‘voice’ through my captures as I move forward in this creative endeavour?

“Start before you’re ready. Good things happen when we start before we’re ready.”
Steven Pressfield.

With these wise words in mind, I’m publishing an image that I would consider far from being ‘ready’, after taking my new camera out on its first photoshoot…
It’s a blurry but cute Platypus complete with date stamp that I hadn’t realised I’d accidentally added…
****note to self, don’t forget to turn the camera to portrait mode for a different aspect***

 

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A Platypus swimming happily in the Alfred Nicolas Gardens not far from Melbourne, Australia

 

May this, as well as an inspiring article in the link in the above quote, offer encouragement to anyone waiting to be ‘perfect’ at something before beginning…
waiting for that ‘right’ time..
.

We could well wait forever…

Just start. I encourage you to take that first step in whatever you feel is calling you…together we can grow into our journey ahead, as we watch it unfold before us…

Thank you for being here,
Much love from Di 💜

 

“What is love, mummy?” A children’s story…❤️

 Hello to you,

This post is a contribution for Nikki’s inspiring blog, Flying Through Water and her creative weekly prompt. This week it was about Love.

I could have written about this in a million ways, but this is the piece I was called to create. It became my magical carpet on which to lay out my thoughts on this beautiful word, LOVE.

I do hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed producing it…🌹

 

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Love is kindness and compassion for all

 

 

       “There was once a sensitive little girl who always wondered about what love really meant.
Sure, she was part of a family and they existed under the one roof, but always with dinner on the table and some clean clothes to wear…

        She assumed she was loved, although no-one had ever really made a fuss about her or told her they loved her.
So she just went about her life, doing what she was told, hoping to be a good girl, wanting to make people feel happy. Happy meant more to her than love. And helping people. She knew what both of those things looked like.

        She would attend weddings of her older sisters and aunts and uncles, and at the back of her mind she was searching, watching, quietly observing for any hint of what love should look like.
It had a colour, didn’t it? She tried hard to find it. Was it more about a whirling in their hearts that she couldn’t see with her own eyes?

       Did the couple being married have a new sense of something being different? Was there a puff of pink sparkly mist that should accompany them like their own little cloud of joy? And so, love meant pink for her…

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And what about that phrase she heard about for so long…’being in love…’

She wondered what that felt like. Would she know when it was her time to be in it? In what exactly?

And so her time was spent pondering these questions.

She said she ‘loved’ chocolate… and climbing trees. Was that the same thing?

        She learnt at school that Jesus had taught us to ‘love one another as I have loved you.’
It was hard to make sense of it. ‘Don’t we just LOVE our family? And aren’t they just supposed to LOVE us?

How can you love other people that aren’t your family? What would that look like?

         One day, when she hadn’t quite finished school, she met a boy. He was at the school next door. They accidentally met on the train on the way home. He seemed to really like her even though she had no idea who or what she was about. But she knew he was something pretty special.

        As time went on she would assume she loved him too  because she discovered she couldn’t imagine life without him, and she really liked who she was when she was with him.

Did that mean ‘love’, she pondered?

       She felt very ‘loved’ by him because he thought she was beautiful whatever her mood, through her tears, through her times of fear, doubt, her self imposed thoughts of ugliness, her happy times, the times she was so frustrated that she would upset him… and always he would say he loved her. He never attempted to change her or ask why she couldn’t be stronger or less emotional.

He didn’t judge her either…

     This very quiet little girl became a nurse, simply because she wanted to make people feel better, to feel they mattered, to show compassion for them in their suffering. That idea had kept her going all those years when she felt like she didn’t fit in anywhere, when the world seemed too big for someone who just wanted to hold a person’s hand in their time of suffering.

So gradually, things began to make sense…

     Perhaps she was doing what Jesus was teaching when she was simply sitting with someone when they were sad or broken.

    Perhaps it was being loving to others when we can imagine what they are going through.

     She remembered the time she was still little and owned a pet bird that had died one day. It was possible to remember what sadness felt like when one of her school friends said they had lost a pet… or even their Nana or Pa..

    She never laughed when somebody tripped over or did something silly because she could feel how embarrassing that would be to have someone see you do that.

Was all of this ‘showing love?’

      Was it found in just being kind, imagining what it’s like to be someone else and feeling what they could be feeling, not laughing at others, being helpful?
She began to discover that it was…

She could feel a little flutter in her heart when she felt she was being ‘loving’ towards someone.

Was that what it felt like?

     Did she have to feel it every day with the boy she met on the train for the rest of her life? Does that feeling stay forever? Or does it change and grow to mean something different?

     She had three little babies with that boy who became her husband. They have all grown up now.
She learnt about love from watching them and accepting them when they were difficult, when they had a tantrum, and yet every day, she couldn’t wait to pick them up out of their cot and see them, as if for the first time…
They all had their own little personalities and one was not better than the other. She thought they were all beautiful. They didn’t have to be perfect for her. They were just being themselves.

Surely that was love?

      Gradually as the years passed, she realised that she could be even better if she learnt to love herself. That didn’t mean going around and telling everybody how good she was.
It was about accepting herself for all the things that make her the person she is.

Some days she was upset, some days she was happy, some days she forgot things, some days she said something accidentally to make someone sad. These were all the parts that made her whole and she was beginning to be alright with that.

     This little girl who grew up learnt that there is love to be found in a kind word to someone she didn’t even know. It could be a person in a shop, or someone she met on the way to somewhere else.
It’s giving someone a flower from the garden, hugging someone, writing to say ‘thank you’ when someone had shown love to her by bringing a flower or sending a tiny metal Angel in the post, wiping someone’s tears with the corner of a tissue, sitting next to someone who is sad, doing some fun things together and laughing, saying nothing at all, just listening…

…saying ‘I love you…’

      She came to discover it’s really a special word that means very simple but beautiful things and can be different for everyone…and we need to be shown love in our own special ways too. Ways that speak our language…

     Some of us like to be told we are loved, some of us like to be shown we are loved through gifts or spending time together, some of us just need a big bear hug to feel loved.

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 When we wish that someone can be as happy as us,

or we wish to say or do something that can make them feel better,

when we just want the best for them…without expecting anything in return…

when we don’t make someone feel bad about being who they are…

    That’s love, actually…”

 

….I also realise love can present itself as a little heart enclosing our written words, it can come draped around encouragement, as an extra ingredient baked into a cake, it can be buying a magazine from a homeless person, it can be many things, but what we do know is…

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******Song embedded for you… sung by Dionne Warwick, ‘What the World Needs Now’ 

 

I’d love to make mention of a book I bought quite a few years ago upon which some of this philosophy here is based…
‘The Five Love Languages’ by Gary Chapman. It appeared at a time I was questioning what it all was supposed to be about. I thought you may enjoy seeing this too.

Thank you for reading…I wish you much love in your life and some from me too…
Di 💕

Are you a highly sensitive person (HSP)?

Hello for another week,
This post is a big one for me…

You see, I’ve been sitting on this knowledge for a few years and waited for the right time and platform to share something that changed my life.

I discovered I was a HSP, short for a Highly Sensitive person.
I learnt there was such a trait after I heard it on a podcast and I literally bawled…I know there are reservations about labels, and having worked in Supported Education in a secondary school, I certainly know about the often overuse of labels.
But in my experience, sometimes it was a helpful diagnosis for the student, and other times it was requested to remain hidden and not discussed.
So it was with this in mind that I have held back.
After finding a wonderful post about this very topic by a a Psychologist, school professor blogger by the name of Dr Andrea Dinardo…. I knew what my next reblog had to be…

So it is with much pleasure that I’m helping to spread this information shared here by lovely Dr Dinardo from her inspiring blog about Positive Psychology (not to be confused with Positive thinking).
Our hope is for everyone who didn’t quite understand why they couldn’t just ‘fit in with the crowd’ for many reasons, who had been told to just ‘grow a thicker skin’, was made fun of for crying easily, over thinking everything… the list goes on, comes to accept there is nothing wrong with us. Dr Dinardo covers this topic beautifully below.

There are resource links in Dr Dinardo’s post, including that of Elaine Aron, who pioneered the research.

You will discover your sensitivity is a beautiful thing and something to be proud of, no longer wishing to hide it under the carpet for fear of ridicule. It’s in a way, like coming home to ourselves and feeling a new sense of belonging and purpose…

This just may be… your first step to that self-acceptance you have strived for throughout your life…
I’m with you in this HSP journey, and may just explain some of my musings in previous blog posts.
Wishing you well,
and I’d really welcome comments and thoughts if feel you have something to share about your experiences.

Much love,
Di 💜

Thriving Under Pressure

Cherish your sensitivity. It is your superpower.

Do you experience more stress than the average person? Are you overly sensitive to external stimuli. Chances are, there is nothing wrong with you or your coping strategies.

Instead, your brain may be more sensitive to stress than the average person. You may in fact, be what Dr. Elaine Aron has coined “A Highly Sensitive Person” (HSP).

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Neurological differences found in HSP’s.

Brain scans show that HSP’s have “heightened activity in empathy-related brain regions” including the anterior insula (insular cortex), highlighted in the brain scan below.

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The intensified response of highly sensitive people (HSP) to stress is not a choice – it’s biological. HSP brains are wired differently than the average person. This fact has been clearly supported by scientific research.

Self Test: Are You Highly Sensitive?

  1. Are you easily overwhelmed by such things as bright lights, strong smells, coarse fabrics, or sirens…

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